India to bankroll 1 GW of solar projects with $158 million

The Indian government has said it will provide as much as INR 10 billion ($158 million) to state-run companies in order to build 1 GW of grid-connected solar PV projects in the next three years, Bloomberg reported on Monday.

The companies will have to use PV cells and modules manufactured in India in order to secure funding, Bloomberg said, citing a government statement.

State-run companies such electric utility NTPC Ltd., National Hydroelectric Power Corp Ltd. (NHPC) and the Indian Railways are planning to build solar projects in the country. NTPC, which has already pledged to invest close to $1 billion in renewable energy in the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, last week announced that it planned to install solar PV panels atop all of its thermal power plants as part of the 1 GW push over the next three years.

Likewise, Coal India Ltd. (CIL), the largest producer of fuel in the country, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Solar Energy Corporation India (SECI) to develop 1 GW of solar PV plants across the country.

In addition, the government said it would waive statutory clearances for projects located in remote areas where land is inexpensive.

India has so far installed 3 GW of solar power as part of the country’s Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission, which aims to reach 22 GW by 2022.